Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Blessings & Busyness!

Hi y’all! Wow, we’ve had such a big week! I’ve wanted to write a new post all week but haven’t had any time! Since so much has happened, I thought I would just write a little update post! God has been blessing us in so many amazing ways lately! We’ve had so many prayers answered this week, from little things to big things! It’s been very encouraging and we are thankful!

This week we…

Started our first fundraiser!
The Adoption Closet Sale has been very successful so far! We’ve raised around $1,500 in just a few days! It’s been so encouraging and fun to have people give towards our adoption but also receive something in return! I’ve had a blast being a personal stylist for all the girls who have shopped our sale ;)!
If anyone is interested in coming to look through all the items of clothing, shoes, jewelry, etc. please let me know by either emailing me at tylergordykoch@gmail.com, Facebooking me or texting me! You can also shop & bid on items through our fundraising instagram @fundraisingforbabyk ! We will be hosting this fundraiser for the next couple of weeks (until we move)!

Our first shoppers! 
 Griffin & I had SO much fun when she came over! 
Carolyn bought 26 items! The record so far! 

Completed our home study (well almost)!
We finished the interview process of our home study! We really enjoyed meeting with our social worker. The home study helped educate us on aspects of adoption and also made us talk through lots of adoption and parenting topics! Once our social worker types up our information and finalizes it, we will be approved! Yay! One major step closer to bringing Baby K home!

 We took pictures after every home study meeting to document the process! I'm so glad we did! 





Attended a prolife/adoption fundraiser!
Cary and I were blessed to attend Bowties for Babies, a benefit held to fundraise for Advertise for Life Project through the Louisiana Right to Life federation. It was a great night celebrating advances in prolife efforts and adoption in Louisiana. We were touched by the stories shared and encouraged by the progress being made in Louisiana legislation for the prolife movement! It was also a special night for us to officially celebrate beginning our adoption journey with my parents!



I'm so thankful for my parents!


Got our baby crib!
Oh my goodness, we have a baby crib in our house!!! I have been waiting for it to get here all week and it finally arrived! Cary put it together and it looks great! Can’t wait to start planning out the rest of the nursery! I love decorating, crafting and all things baby nursery (you should see my Pinterest board!) so I’m pretty excited to get to start working on new projects for little Baby K! I’ve been anticipating the day I could finally do these kinds of things, so I get excited about every little detail!




Found someone to rent!
Another HUGE thing happened this week! We found someone to sublease our house while we are away in Canada for the 2014 football season. We are so excited and extremely relieved. We were about to give up the search and start moving out, so you can imagine how happy we are that we don’t have to do that! Woo! Thanks to all of you who prayed for our housing situation. We are grateful and God is so good!


How you can pray for us this week:
Cary and I are taking a much needed trip to the beach! It’s a late anniversary trip for us, and we are excited about taking some time for ourselves before our big move back to Canada! Pray for us relax, soak up the sun and enjoy quality time together!
Pray for us as we continue our fundraising efforts, specifically our Adoption Closet Sale! Also, we received our first few adoption donations this week! Please pray for the sweet, generous people who have supported us so far. We have been so touched by people's willingness to bless us. 
Pray for us as we prepare to move! We have so much to do and need it all to fall into place over the next few weeks! Pray for Cary as he continues to train and prepare for training camp and the transition to a new football team.
Pray for us as we continue to share our story with so many! We want to give God glory through our journey and share the truth of His love and goodness with people!
And finally, please pray over all the aspects of our adoption, especially our sweet baby-to-be! We are trusting God with our journey & rejoicing over answered prayer!


Thanks for checking in! 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

FAQ!

Wow, I can't really put into words how blessed we have felt this week after announcing our adoption! Thank y'all so much for all of the support and love! We have been so encouraged and touched by all of the responses! Baby K is going to be one loved little baby!
We have gotten so many questions about our adoption journey over the past week. We thought it would be a good idea to post some of the most frequently asked! Feel free to ask us more, so you can learn as we learn! :)

Where will Baby K be born?

We are pursuing domestic adoption, meaning we are adopting from within the U.S. We won’t know what state our baby will be born in until closer to the end of the adoption process.

How does this process work?

In our last post, we talked about our home study, which is the first major step in our adoption process. We have almost finished the interviewing process of our home study and are expecting it
to be completed by June. (Refer back to our first post to read more about the home study!)
Instead of working with just one adoption agency, we are actually working with adoption consultants. The consultants will act as “middle men” between us and multiple adoption agencies, lawyers and other adoptive situations. We are hoping this will help the adoption process go faster and more smoothly. Our adoption consultants are Christians and see their business as a ministry. Their goal is to allow us have a positive adoption experience and to provide comfort, guidance and support throughout the process. They have grown their own families through adoption and know firsthand how intimidating and difficult the process to adopt can be. Here’s the link to our consultant’s site if you are interested in reading more about them: http://www.faithfuladoptionconsultants.com
We are currently working on our adoption profile book. Our profile book will play an important part in our adoption. This is basically a scrapbook of our lives-it includes pictures of us, describes our life, interests, beliefs and what kind of life we hope to give to a child. The purpose of this book is to allow the birthmother (and father if he is involved) to see if they can picture their child becoming part of our family. We even get to include a letter to the birthmother, thanking her for choosing life for her child and for considering us to parent her baby.
Once we have completed our home study, profile book, and done some fundraising, we will be ready to present to birthmothers. This means that our adoption consultants will start “matching” us with potential birthmothers. If we accept the birthmother as a match, our profile book will then be presented to her. The birthmother could be presented with many books at a time! She will look through them and choose the family she can picture raising her child. We might have to present our profile book to multiple birthmothers before one chooses us! Once she does choose us, we are committed to that baby (although the birthmother could still decide to parent her child up until shortly after the child is born).

How long will it take?

We aren’t sure! The typical adoption process can take anywhere from just a few months to a few years. Our adoption consultants help to make the process go much quicker and they have never had a family wait longer than 9 months to bring their baby home (once the family is approved and “active”). We are asking to be matched with a birthmother due in December or after, so that we will be back from Canada before bringing Baby K home! Hopefully we will have our baby home sometime between December and next May; it could be longer depending on many circumstances.

What are the expenses of adoption?

Adoptions are expensive. Adoptions in the U.S. typically range from $20,000-$45,000. The cost is very intimidating and most people are shocked when they learn about the financial side of adoption. (We are planning on writing an entire post on the financial aspects of adoption soon to talk about the details of what this cost covers!)
We are currently researching and thinking about ways to fundraise and finance our adoption. We are also starting to apply for grants and looking into adoption loans. We will be fundraising throughout our adoption process so that we will be prepared financially when Baby K is ready to come home!

How old? Gender? Race?

We are adopting a newborn. We are hoping to be there (wherever it ends up being) the day our baby is born (or as soon as possible).
We are excited to see what baby God has picked out for our family. When praying and talking about our options, Cary and I both felt like we should be open minded and not put many limitations on what baby could be ours. That being said, we don’t have a preference for gender! We might be able to find out the gender once we are matched with a birthmother. However, we might not know the gender until the baby is actually born!
We are also open to a baby from any race! We know adopting a child from a different race will be a challenge in many ways, but we are excited about the possibility of having a diverse family.

How can we help?

The number one way we would love for you to be a part of our journey is through prayer! There are so many unknowns in this process; we believe that God has a plan for us and that HE is in control! Pray for our hearts to fully trust in Him through the journey!
You can consider donating to our adoption. We are working on getting a donation site set up right now! We’re hoping it will be up and running in the next few weeks! You can also participate in the fundraisers that we will be putting on. We are brainstorming about fundraisers right now and will definitely need people who are willing to volunteer, donate items, time and resources!
Finally, keep asking us about our adoption adventure! We love to talk about it and it helps us feel supported and excited! 


Thanks for checking in! 


Our social worker gave us this document on appropriate adoption language. We've found it very helpful and wanted to share! :) 



Hope everyone had a great Easter! My thoughtful mom gave me this sweet little necklace for Easter. It is the first "baby gift" I've received and I love it!


"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11


Monday, April 14, 2014

We are ADOPTING!

Cary and I are thrilled to announce that we have started the process of adoption! It makes it all the more special that we are announcing the news today on our 2 year anniversary! We are incredibly excited and filled with joy about this new direction we feel God leading our family. We decided to start this blog so that we could bring our family and friends along with us on this journey!



Let us start by filling you in on how we came to this decision. Cary and I have always wanted to adopt. Even before we were married adoption was something we were sure God was calling us to. Our plan was to have a few biological children and then adopt as well (we’ve always planned on having a big family!) Early in 2013 Cary and I started trying to get pregnant. After a year of trying to conceive, we were diagnosed with infertility. This was an extremely difficult time for us, and I took it especially hard. I honestly felt like all of my dreams came crashing down around me. The sadness and devastation I felt were indescribable. I felt hopeless, alone and abandoned by God. The one thing I’ve always desired to be is a mom. I don’t have any amazing career plans or passions that I want to devote my life to. I’ve always felt like my calling was to be a mommy to a big family. After being diagnosed with infertility, I felt cheated by God and felt lots of anger, confusion and a great sense of loss for the biological children I have always hoped to have. Pregnancy announcements, pictures of babies and even people just bringing up anything related to fertility in conversation was enough to send me into a fit of tears or worse. I’m so thankful for my close friends and family who prayed for me and hugged me when there weren’t the right words to comfort me. 

After going through a few IUI treatments unsuccessfully, we felt like it was the right time for us to pursue adoption. As soon as we made the decision to seriously look into adoption, I felt an overwhelming sense of peace, joy and purpose come back into my life. This helped confirm in my heart that God was directing our steps towards adoption. Through the very early stages of our adoption process, I felt God start to mend the hole in my heart and giving me a refreshed hope and a new dream for our family. Within the first few days of deciding to pursue adoption we were very blessed to have conversations with people who had adopted before and were in the process of adoption. We received so much encouragement from these conversations and again felt God confirming our desire. Within 2 days we filled out an application with adoption consultants, started our adopted profile book and set up a home study meeting with a local social worker. Things were moving fast and our sense of certainty and excitement was quickly growing!

We view adoption as a beautiful picture of the gospel. We pray that by adopting a child we will be mirroring God’s great love and his adoption of us as his beloved children. We already feel so much love for our future child. I really believe that God has already used adoption to show me more about His heart and His character. I’m so excited to see what baby God has picked out to join our family!

Although we are moving forward with adoption and plan to adopt again in the future, we aren’t giving up hope on having biological children. We want to start our family as quickly as possible. Adoption will allow us to follow our desire to start our family and we are so thankful we have this option! I know many people won’t understand our decision to adopt before doing extensive fertility treatment. Basically, we believe that any child we adopt will be just as much “our own” as any biological child we could have. We don’t see adoption as a second choice, we see adoption as a beautiful way for God to provide for our family. We are open to continuing fertility treatment in the future but know that it could take months or years to conceive. And while we hope that we might have a biological child one day, we are also realistic about our diagnosis and realize our dream might not come true. That being said, we believe that God could heal us from our infertility. We would love for those of you following along with our journey to parenthood to pray for revelation about what is wrong in our bodies, doctors who are wise and willing to help us treat our infertility and for complete healing and the ability to conceive and birth biological children. Regardless of what may happen in the future with our infertility diagnosis, we know that God is calling us to start our family now through adoption and we are responding in faith!

Where we are in the process now:
We are still in the beginning stages of adoption. The biggest thing we are working on right now is completing our home study. A home study is conducted by a licensed social worker. The purpose of the home study is to educate, evaluate and prepare us for adoption. The home study consists of 4-5 home visits, extensive background checks, health evaluations, collecting references, as well as paperwork and interviewing. We are about halfway through this process. Once we have completed our home study, we will be approved and one step closer to becoming parents! 
We are also working on researching and brainstorming creative ways to fundraise and finance our adoption. We will go into the financial aspects of adoption in another post! 

How you can pray for us:
Pray that our home study process will continue to go smoothly and that we will be approved quickly and without any complications.
Pray for us as we face questions surrounding our infertility diagnosis and adoption journey. Pray for God to give us the grace and wisdom to answer all questions (even the invasive, rude or insensitive ones) with truth, love and kindness. We want our journey to help educate others on adoption and also to allow others to understand more about God’s amazing love.
Pray for us as we prepare our hearts and lives for sweet Baby K! We would love for you to join us in praying for our precious little baby, who is most likely just now being formed in his/her’s birth mother’s womb. Please pray for God’s hand to be on our beautiful child in every stage of their development in the womb. Please pray for the birth mother of our baby. Pray that she would care for her body and baby to the very best of her ability. Pray that the Lord would give her an intense love for her baby and that He would help her make wise decisions in every step of her pregnancy. Pray that through her adoption journey she would truly feel the peace, comfort and love of God. Pray for her heart as she makes an adoption plan for her baby, that she would feel confident in her decision to give her child the best life possible.
Please pray for all of the details of our adoption to fall into place-from the legal aspects, to fundraising, to our housing situation.

Thank you for joining our adoption adventure! We are so thankful to have the support of our family and friends! Stay tuned for more posts and information on how you can be involved in bringing Baby K home! 

*If you have Instagram go follow @theadventuresofbabyk & @fundraisingforbabyk !



Juno is excited to be a big sister! 
"We're on an adventure to bring home baby K!"

So thankful for 2 amazing years of marriage to the love of my life!

     “The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.” -Psalm 126:3